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Male Reproductive System

It’s important to understand how your body works, especially the organs that play a role in leading to pregnancy. Males and females have different reproductive systems. For some of you, however, you may have body parts that don’t fit the typical definitions of males or females. This is described as intersex. Learn about the different sexes and genders on the Sex and Gender page.

On this page, you’ll be learning about the male reproductive system. If you want to learn about pregnancy and how your body changes during puberty, visit our Pregnancy and Puberty pages.

In addition, check out this video going over the male reproductive system.

External Structures

  • Penis. The penis is an organ that contains sponge-like erectile tissue. When a man is sexually aroused, blood fills the penis, causing the penis to become hard and erect, which is called an erection. You may know it as a boner, but there are no bones in the penis.
  • Scrotum. The scrotum is a pouch of loose skin behind the penis that surrounds the testicles.
  • Testicles. The testicles, also known as the testes, are oval-shaped organs that produce testosterone, a hormone that is produced mainly in men, and sperm.
  • Epididymis. The epididymis stores sperm and transports it to the vas deferens.

Internal Structures

  • Vas deferens. The vas deferens is a long tube from the epididymis to behind the bladder. It carries sperm to the urethra for ejaculation.
  • Seminal vesicles. The seminal vesicles are pouches connected to the vas deferens near the bladder. They secrete fluid that aids sperm in mobility and makes up majority of semen, the fluid that a male ejaculates that includes sperm.
  • Prostate gland. The prostate gland produces additional fluids for semen.
  • Urethra. The urethra is a tube that runs from the bladder and through the prostate and penis to the outside of the body. It expels urine and semen, but not at the same time. During sex, only semen is ejaculated.

Content reviewed by Shandhini Raidoo, MD, MPH, FACOG

Last Updated: September 25, 2020 by Phyllis Raquinio

Sources

Male Reproductive Anatomy Photo: Male Reproductive System. (2016, November 7). Retrieved July 24, 2020, from https://my.clevelandclinic.org/health/articles/9117-male-reproductive-system